Access For All
The Crowne Plaza is part of the Intercontinental Hotel Group (IHG). Hotels who are part of this membership offer Access For All. If the facilities don’t initially meet your requirement they will endeavour to offer a suitable alternative. Hotels overseas under this umbrella membership are beginning to equip their rooms with ceiling track hoists. They will welcome feedback to ensure that they stay true to their ‘Access For All’ promise, so it will pay to let them know as currently in New Zealand hoists are rare to find.
In Auckland Crowne Plaza:
- All areas of the hotel are accessible and they have 15 designated accessible rooms.
- Vision-impaired guests will find emergency instruction in 14pt print, braille on Lifts and in Public areas and audible alarms in hallways.
- Hearing-impaired will find visual alarms and alerts in guest rooms, hallways and public areas.
The Crowne Plaza is located right in the heart of Auckland City, 5-minutes from the event venues of Aotea Square, the Civic Theatre, Sky Tower and New Zealand’s only IMAX Event Cinema. You will be spoilt for choice with accessible restaurants and high street shopping. Kneel down buses are constantly stopping along Queen Street to pick and drop off passengers to all parts of the City.
The entrance is lip-free with huge glass sliding doors that automatically open to allow access. It is grand, well lit, with a constant stream of taxis in waiting for guests to hail a ride. You will be met by an active Concierge Service waiting to assist with porters and travel arrangements.
You will find underground parking just to the side of the main entrance into the Hotel. The maximum height is 1.9 m, so unfortunately not for any high-top vans that usually need a 2.4 m clearance. The cost Monday to Friday is $26 per day (you can come and go as often as you like on that daily fee) and on the weekend $10 per day.
The Reception & Lobby
Once you enter through the automatic glass sliding doors you will be immediately greeted by high ceilings, open space, great lighting, reception desks and even a convenience shop sharing the space just as you come in. I found the reception staff very helpful and they were delighted to show me around the hotel.
Lifts to Floors
The lifts service all the floors with good circulation inside. They are located in the Foyer close to Reception. You will find the use of Braille on all the operating panels.
Accessible Toilets, Ground Floor
Located right next to the reception and lobby is a public accessible toilet.
The lifts will take you up to the accessible rooms, the access rooms are generally located close to the lifts on each floor. One we viewed with the connecting room was a little further away. The hallways are carpeted with hard wearing carpeting that is easy to wheel along.
The Room with a Connecting Door
This is one of their accessible rooms with the option of a connecting room. The upside of having this connecting room is it allows for a companion or a caregiver to stay close. The downside to this room however, is that the balcony is shared with whoever stays in the connecting room. Not such a great thing if you are not booking it yourself.
There are side lights that can be turned off once you are in bed.
Access to the balcony doesn’t have lip-free access so will pose a barrier to a guest in a wheelchair, particularly a power chair. However, the door is wide enough to exit if you travel with a suitcase ramp or have the skill or assistance to negotiate the step up.
This bathroom is a good size with a hinged door that opens inward. The shower being located next to the door does create the chance of excess water and the potential of slipping when coming through.
The towels are at easy reach and there is a strong wooden fold down bench.
Accessible Room without Connecting Room
The accessible rooms are all carpeted throughout with a similar layout and outlook. You will find the twin bed options have a bigger circulation space as they forfeit the sofa bed. The bedside lights are operable from the bed. The television can also be viewed from the bed too. I measured a 90 mm clearance under the King Bed. The mattress was very comfortable. If you require the use of a rollaway bed it will be an additional $65.
Each accessible room has furniture that can be re-arranged to enable better circulation to suit preference.
The bathroom has quite a different layout than I’m used to seeing with the roll-in shower located in a central point. Space having been made to accommodate the option of a bath and a roll-in shower.
No fold down shower bench noted, but a shower stool can be made available on request. There is sufficient transfer space on one side only to use the toilet. The hinged, inwardly opening door would need to be closed beforehand to allow privacy or left open for safety reasons. Closing the door could pose a problem as the wheelchair would essentially block the door creating a barrier in case assistance was needed.
The hinged door allows a 760 mm width for access. The sink has a seating clearance of 700 mm. There is a handheld shower with hose and most items can be reached without assistance.
Restaurant & Bar
On our visit the restaurant and bar was set up for a large conference group.